De La Cruz's Four Hit Night Leads RedHawks to Home Opener Win
FARGO, ND - Keury De La Cruz got on base five times and had four hits as the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks beat the Lincoln Saltdogs 5-3 on Friday night before a crowd of 4,041 fans at Newman Outdoor Field.
The home-opener win for the RedHawks (4-3) ended the Saltdogs (4-4) four-game winning streak.
Lincoln's offense struck early with Chase Simpson's triple in the first inning. But the Redhawks would tie the game in the bottom of the first as Brennan Metzger drew the first of his three walks and scored on a De La Cruz double.
Nathaniel Maggio helped the Saltdogs regain the lead again in the second inning, with a solo home run to right field and a 2-1 lead
But the RedHawks would answer in the fifth inning by getting two runs on three hits with three stolen bases for a 3-2 lead.
Lincoln would come back in the sixth, when center fielder Chad Hinshaw lined a triple off in center field that would end RedHawks' starter D.J. Brown's night on the mound.
But in the seventh inning, the RedHawks took the lead for good as De La Cruz got on base with a fielder's choice and advanced to second base on an error. Lincoln intentionally walked RedHawks's third baseman Tommy Mendonca to get to Charlie Valerio and the RedHawks' catcher came up big with a double to bring in the leading run and a 4-3 lead.
However, De La Cruz wasn't done as he poked a two-out single to score Maikol Gonzalez and give the RedHawks a two-run lead in the eighth.
Travis Ballew came in for the RedHawks in the seventh and got the win (3-1) newly acquired right-hand closer Randy McCurry was credited with the save as Lincoln's Jose Jose was charged with the loss and goes 0-1 in the season.
The victory was RedHawks manager Michael Schlact's first home opener win as he became the team's second manager in franchise history in the fall of 2017.
Game two of the series continues on Saturday with the first pitch is at 6:00PM at Newman Outdoor Field. Jack Michaels has the call on 740 the Fan and online at fmredhawks.com.
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